P.E.I. ranks 7th in Canada when it comes to energy efficiency, study says

P.E.I. is doing well in some areas and poor in others when it comes to energy efficiency, according to a study by Efficiency Canada released Tuesday morning.

P.E.I. ranked seventh in the Provincial Energy Efficiency Scorecard put out by the organization.

The study looked at what each province has been doing on everything from energy-efficiency programs and building codes to transportation.

"Energy efficiency deserves a lot more attention than it typically gets," said Brendan Haley, the study's lead author and public director at Efficiency Canada.

Haley said discussions around energy usually focus on oil, gas and wind turbines.

It is really a snapshot in time of the policies in each of the provinces. — Brendan Haley, Efficiency Canada

"The energy we save is a huge abundant opportunity," Haley said.

He said P.E.I. could create more jobs in the sector by hiring more energy advisers.

Poor in some areas

The province does not have as many trained energy advisers as other provinces, and it doesn't have a province-wide building code, Haley said.

"That is an area that the province could improve upon. There is a lot more trained energy advisers in other provinces, actually some of the neighbouring provinces," he said.

P.E.I. has one energy adviser for every 100 residential construction permits, compared to six energy advisers in Nova Scotia and three in New Brunswick.

Doing well in other areas

However, he said P.E.I. is doing well in some other areas.

"We did find some areas of leadership in P.E.I., in particular the amount of investment being made in upgrading the low-income households as well as the efforts being made by Efficiency PEI in fuel oil savings are quite large and to be commended," Haley said.

Tom Steepe/CBC

P.E.I. also has plans in place to ramp up electricity saving and implement a province-wide building code.

In fact, if the province follows through on its commitments, Haley said he expects it will do much better in the rankings next year.

The study consulted representatives from governments and utilities in every province and territory, beginning in the summer of 2018, on the goals of the scorecard. The study also reached out to experts in the areas of building codes, transportation and industrial efficiency.

Each province was given a score out of 100. P.E.I. scored 26. The scorecard will be sent to all provinces and territories, Haley said.

"Our plan is to do it every year, because it is really a snapshot in time of the policies in each of the provinces," he said.

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